social climber


Definition of social climber

: one who attempts to gain a higher social position or acceptance in fashionable society

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Other Words from social climber

social climbing noun

Examples of social climber in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Born into a humble family, this ambitious social climber married the brother of Pope Innocent X. Pamela Mccourt Francescone, Travel + Leisure, "Where Lady Gaga Should Go In Rome to Celebrate Centuries of Powerful Women," 17 Mar. 2021 At first glance, this version of Marion echoes the talentless social climber Susan Alexander, Charles Foster Kane’s mistress and second wife in Citizen Kane, widely believed to have been based on her. Anne Cohen,, "Marion Davies’ Scandalously Glamorous Life Deserves Its Own Movie," 7 Dec. 2020 Tomlinson hazards that, for a social climber, hunting with aristocrats was that era’s version of golfing with C.E.O.s. Peter Schjeldahl, The New Yorker, "Goya and the Art of Survival," 14 Sep. 2020 The second is a series of apologies and excuses for a tax cheat, voyeur-sadist, bad son, skinflint, publicity hound, social climber, shopaholic. Stephen Metcalf, Los Angeles Times, "Review: Was Andy Warhol a saint or scourge, genius or dolt? A new biography befits a great life," 22 Apr. 2020 Brenda, who helped her husband Morty (Dan Hedaya) build his business from the ground up, is stunned when his sudden success and mid-life crisis prompts him to leave her for Sherry (Sarah Jessica Parker), a young, vapid social climber. Anne Cohen,, "The First Wives Club," 2 Apr. 2020 The Wall Street Journal once compared Ms. Holzer to Jay Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s fictional social climber — mysterious, elegant and doomed. New York Times, "Adela Holzer, Whose Fall From Grace Was Theatrical, Is Dead," 8 Jan. 2020 The shameless social climber was confronted and bowed out of the group. Amy Dickinson, Washington Post, "Ask Amy: Parents want boyfriend to go, but daughter follows," 25 June 2019 And with three skilled actresses at the film’s center, characters that could so easily be reduced to familiar stereotypes — the crazy one, the conniving one, the social climber — are instead imbued with humanity. Alissa Wilkinson, Vox, "The Favourite is a deliciously wicked tale of sex, women, and power plays," 21 Nov. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'social climber.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of social climber

1894, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for social climber

Time Traveler

The first known use of social climber was in 1894

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Statistics for social climber

Last Updated

20 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“Social climber.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for social climber

social climber


English Language Learners Definition of social climber

disapproving : someone who tries to gain a higher social position or status (such as by becoming friendly with wealthy people)

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